AcadGild is a professional training online bootcamp, which aims to bring accessible, affordable, engaging, and highly effective quality education to the world. Serial entrepreneur Vinod Dham (also known as the Father of Pentium) and Vikalp Jain co-founded the company in early 2015. Till date, the company has successfully trained over 6,000 students worldwide through its professional certification training courses. AcadGild emphasizes on “learning by doing”, rather than by reading, listening or watching videos. The company’s mission is to teach hands-on, job ready software programming and business skills, globally, in small batches of 8 to 10 to both students and working professionals. All Acadgild courses are delivered live, online, by expert mentors who are carefully handpicked from leading companies like Oracle, Cognizant, Accenture, Infosys, BookMyShow, etc.
Idea behind the Project
On this Vikalp Jain shared “As a techie, I was very disappointed with the options available for people to acquire tech skills. They had to either go to a training centre, or sit at home and watch boring videos. The concept of mentoring did not exist and for people like us who have spent their entire career in technology, we understand that it’s really hard for people to learn a new skill without a mentor. That’s how the idea of AcadGild came about.”
The core team
Vikalp Jain – He is 42 and completed his B Tech from the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai. He specializes in technology especially ecommerce and mobile related, algorithms, natural language processing and machine learning, ideation, motivating teams and individuals to innovate, conflict resolution and strategizing offshore-onshore engagement models.
Revenue, traction and growth
In just over a year, AcadGild has successfully trained more than 6,000 students worldwide through its professional certification training courses. Also, the startup is growing by about 30% on a month-on-month basis. AcadGild started off with its flagship program, Android Development. Within three months of gaining popularity, team launched other courses like Full Stack, Big Data, Front End Web Development, Business Analytics, Digital Marketing, and Machine Learning with R, Cloud Computing, Spark, and Core Java.
In June 2015, AcadGild introduced online programming courses for children in the age group of 8 to 17. In 2016, AcadGild added more coding courses for children – Android Development, Raspberry Pi, Arduino, Python, Robotics and Unity 2D. It has also recently introduced job-guaranteed courses for Android and Front-End. After training thousands of candidates in India, in June 2016, AcadGild launched its coding classes in the USA.
USP and Revenue Model
The main factor that differentiates AcadGild from its peers is Intensity. The course duration varies anywhere from 12 to 16 weeks at the end of which, the mentee will be industry ready. The projects, assignments, and the course material are strictly aligned with industry needs and keeping the future tech trends in mind. AcadGild works on a subscription-based model. The course fees range from INR 15,000 to INR 70,000 for the more-intensive courses such as the Job-Guarantee courses. All AcadGild customers are paid for, and the mentors get paid for the hours they put in on a per-hour basis.
Funding received till date
AcadGild is promoted by K Ganesh and Meena Ganesh’s entrepreneurial platform Growth Story. The company has raised more than $2 million funding so far from marquee investors including Jupiter Capital, Zodius, and Kris Gopalakrishnan, former CEO and co-founder of Infosys. The company is looking for funds to strengthen the product range and brand name. Also, the company wishes to fortify mentor networks.
The $146-billion worth Indian IT industry is ever expanding with more and more budding entrepreneurs calling for skilled workforce in the industry. The need for skill upgradation traverses beyond this sector, to the hardware, electronics and semiconductors, and ITeS industries as well. AcadGild aims to address and service the severe mismatch in terms of skills required and their availability in the market. It helps ambitious technology professionals to re-skill themselves with the latest tech and professional courses that are delivered by expert mentors from leading companies.
Expert mentors from leading companies deliver all the courses, and specific emphasis is laid on “learning by doing”, rather than on reading, listening or watching videos. The small batch sizes and round-the-clock support help students advance their skills and make them job-ready. AcadGild offers support and mentorship as per the convenience of the students anytime and accessible from anywhere. The courses offered initially help students master the basics. As they progress further towards completion, the aim is to transform students into the creators of tomorrow. All lessons at AcadGild are personalized to suit the needs of students. Upon completion of the course, a sense of gratification and confidence is intended to be inculcated in the students. Currently there are three certificates given out – Platinum (85% and above), Gold (75% and above), and Silver (65% and above).
AcadGild aims to be the market leader in boot camp professional training course vertical, with a focus on IT and professional learning, in the next five years. AcadGild have entered into an exclusive, multi-year partnership with IL&FS Skills Development Corporation (IL&FS Skills), with an aim to reach out to larger audiences. This will enable the team to offer technology and business-oriented courses to more than 2 lakh Indian students by 2019. AcadGild will also be launching UI/UX-centric courses soon. Read more about Indian Startups.
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